Monday May 11, 2020

A life in legal literacy: Abha Singhal Joshi

On the first episode of the Nagrik Podcast, we learn from Abha Singhal Joshi, whose career is a slice of the recent history of legal literacy programmes in India. Over two calls, she spoke to Nagrik Learning's Aju John about her start in life as a litigator in Delhi and her route to legal literacy programmes via legal journalism.

The conversation covers a lot of ground, including details of her work with the Multiple Action Research Group to deliver legal literacy to the poor and marginalised through the production of learning materials on various aspects of the law, training programmes in different parts of the country, and even the production of a television series that was broadcast on Doordarshan. Finally, she also covered the work of providing training to the police and to the judiciary.

Additional material

Photographs of Abha Singhal Joshi with her colleagues Vasudha Dhagamwar, Seema Misra, Vrinda Narain, and Rajiv Sawhney

Photographs of some legal literacy publications developed by MARG including the Hamare Kanoon series, a title on the Land Acquisition Act, and a (still relevant) title on the Inter-state Migrant Workers Act.

Photographs from the Lex et Juris magazine that was edited by Mahesh Jethmalani and published out of Bombay. In the podcast, Abha talks about the feature on women in the legal profession, which includes includes interviews with (former Supreme Court judge) Ranjana Desai and Zia Mody.

Watch Bol Basanto on YouTube.

Photograph of Abha Singhal Joshi lecturing at the National Police Academy in Hyderabad.



1. The friend that Abha met at Nariman Point who introduced her to the people who ran Lex et Juris, was employed with Singhania and Co. Khaitan and Co., as Abha recollects during the podcast, was not the employer.

2. Abha also mentions that she had interviewed Zena Sorabjee for the Lex et Juris feature on women in the legal profession. The person she interviewed was in fact Ms. Sorabjee's daughter Zia Modi.


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